Giant tuna biggest fish caught in Welsh waters


An angler named Batey landed a monster 900lb (408kg) tuna, which is said to be the largest fish ever caught in Welsh waters.

Off the coast of Pembrokshire, Simon Batey and his friend Jason Nott snagged an Atlantic bluefin tuna.

The enormous 9-foot (2.82-meter) fish was measured, caught, and then released.

A fishery should be formed to draw foreign anglers, according to campaigners who claim that Welsh waterways currently contain some of the largest fish in the world.

While returning from fishing in the Celtic Deeps, a region of the Irish Sea some 30 miles off the coast of west Wales, Mr. Batey, of Sarn, Bridgend, caught the tuna.

He worked alongside skipper Andrew Alsop throughout the hour-long struggle, passing the rod to Mr. Nott from Cwmaman, Rhondda Cynon Taf.

It was measured from the tip of the nose to the tip of the tail, and an approximative weight was then determined using a well accepted formula.

“By far it’s the biggest fish caught in Welsh waters. The previous biggest was around 600lbs,” said Julian Lewis Jones, patron of Angling Cymru.

“It’s no mean feat to catch a fish of this size, at that length it’s the same size as a big shark.

“They are immensely powerful and not something any novices could even try, so it had to be a team effort.”

Jason Nott is an experienced sea angler

Jason Nott is an experienced sea angler © Jason Nott

Before being released, the fish was trailed behind the boat so that it could be measured and then hauled alongside to get a steady supply of oxygen for its gills.

“The discovery of a fish of this size in Welsh waters is quite intriguing. Now swimming in our waters are some of the largest tuna in the world “Added him.

One of only six boats in Wales with a license under the new tuna catch and release tagging (Chart) scheme is commanded by Mr. Alsop of Rhoose, Vale of Glamorgan.

The actor Julian Lewis Jones, best known for his work in the television series House of the Dragons and movies like Invictus and Justice League, claimed Wales has the potential to develop a “world-class” catch-and-release recreational tuna fishery.

"Some of the biggest tuna in the world" are living off the Welsh coast, says actor and keen angler Julian Lewis Jones

“Some of the biggest tuna in the world” are living off the Welsh coast, says actor and keen angler Julian Lewis Jones© Julian Lewis Jones

“The temperature of our waters is fantastic for marine life and if it’s correctly managed we will have this for generations to come,” he said.

“Every year we are seeing more tuna and they are returning and we want anglers to come here from all over the world.”

He added: “As fishermen we are guardians of the marine habitat and have a passion for conservation and the environment.

“We have been working with researchers at Swansea University because we want marine life to thrive. A catch and drop fishery could be managed, sustainable and bringing socio-economic benefits to the area.”

Famed for their size and speed in the water, the Atlantic bluefin tuna, also known as the giant bluefin tuna, disappeared from UK waters during the 1960s due to commercial overfishing and a changing climate.

But they have been spotted feeding in large numbers over the past decade between the months of July and December.

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